Historical Hotties: Henry VIII | A Guest Post by Katherine Longshore

HELLO INTERNET FRIENDS! I am so excited to welcome Katherine Longshore today who is going to enlighten us all on one of my favorite topics: the hotties of history. She’s featuring Henry VIII today. So, let’s do this but first with this image in your head:

Historical Hotties: Henry VIII

Close your eyes and imagine Henry VIII. What do you see? A woolly, pig-eyed behemoth of a man dressed in velvet and dripping with gold? Kitty Tylney, in my first book, GILT, describes him this way: Dressed all in crimson and fur, he blocked out the sun, which created a halo behind him. I wondered briefly how many animals had to die to construct his ermine cape. He towered over the duke. And he was wide. It couldnt all be fat, because he wasnt round, just prodigious. And intimidating. He stood with his feet planted far apart and his hands on his hips, like Colossus straddling the entrance to Rhodes.

Sound about right? This is probably because were all so familiar with the image created by Hans Holbein late in Henrys reign, when he was in his fifties and encumbered by years of belligerence and overindulgence.

Perhaps instead you envision Jonathan Rhys Meyers from the Showtime series The Tudors. Dark and sultry and devilishly handsome, with a wicked streak a mile long. This is closer to the truth of the king in his early years.

There was another Henry. A man, who at the age of only seventeen, became king of England. He was described at the time as so very beautiful that it would become a pretty woman, and that he had all the gifts of grace and of nature. He was an athlete and a dancer, a philosopher and a musician. A true Renaissance man.

Even in his early thirties, he would have been something to behold, at 6 2, not at all fat, with scads of vivacious energy. Penetrating gray-blue eyes, vibrant red hair, a pleasant voice (though some said it was a little high pitched) and charisma to spare, he awed courtiers, charmed ambassadors and beguiled women. Anne Boleyn, in TARNISH, says it wasnt the gold that dazzled me. And it wasnt the jewels. It was the way he wore them. The way they fit the body beneath. Broad chest. Narrow waist. The hard edge of the muscles in his leg beneath the stockings. My limbs weakend at the sight of him. And then he spoke. Smooth. Delicate. Rich. As though his voice could melt in your mouth.

The belligerence of Holbeins portrait and the wicked streak so elegantly portrayed by Meyers were part of Henrys character, though, firmly establishing him as one of historys bad boys at a young age. He invaded France early in his reign in a starry-eyed bid to reclaim the land won by his forefather, Henry V, reveled in the death of the Scottish king James IV and brutally re-conquered and repressed Ireland. He held his power firmly and closely, sweeping disagreements and skeptics out of his way with an often violent hand.

I like to believe that Henry loved as powerfully as he ruledthat he was passionate. He married Catherine of Aragon against his fathers wishes and kept her by his side when he was crowned. He changed religion (and the world) to marry Anne Boleyn, despite the protests of his councilors and his people (and poor Catherine). He waited seven years for her, his love and virtue never wavering. Henry wept when Jane Seymour died and mourned for two years. Of course, that passion mixed with violence also had brutal consequenceshe wept and threatened to kill Catherine Howard when he learned of her adultery.

So was Henry VIII hot?


Would I wish him on my worst enemy?


I see him as a little like Michael Fassbender. Brilliant and beautiful and shockingly charismatic, with eyes so stunning you could lose yourself in them. But equally capable of the brutality of Fassbenders character, Edwin Epps, in 12 Years a Slave.

Be sure to follow along with the rest of the blog tour for interviews with Katherine Longshore and more historical hotties!

Midsummer Romance Blog Tour Schedule:

Tuesday, July 8 Good Books & Good Wine

Thursday, July 10 Perpetual Page Turner

Tuesday, July 15 Alice Marvels

Thursday, July 17 I am a Reader

Tuesday, July 22 Novel Sounds

Thursday, July 24 Starry-Eyed Revue

Tuesday, July 29 The Midnight Garden

Thursday, July 31 Novel Thoughts

Thank you so much to Katherine Longshore for coming to dish with us about Henry VIII.


Be sure to check out and add Brazen to your TBR list:

BrazenbyKatherineLongshore“Mary Howard has always lived in the shadow of her powerful family. But when shes married off to Henry Fitzroy, King Henry VIIIs illegitimate son, she rockets into the Tudor courts inner circle. Mary and Fitz join a tight clique of rebels who test the boundaries of courts strict rules with their games, dares, and flirtations. The more Mary gets to know Fitz, the harder she falls for him, but is forbidden from seeing him alone. The rules of court were made to be pushedbut pushing them too far means certain death. Is true love worth dying for?”

BUT WAIT! Are you hesitant to read or add Brazen to your list? Well, don’t be because today YOU MY FRIEND are getting the chance to win a bind up of Longshore’s previous books:GiltandTarnish inCourted. Granted, these books all stand perfectly alone. However, Longshore’s Tudor books are all amazing and you do not want to miss out on your chance to win! Now, this is US Only and will be shipped directly by the publisher. Must be 13 or older. Here’s my privacy policy.

Courted Katherine Longshore

a Rafflecopter giveaway

About April (Books&Wine)

April is in her 30s and created Good Books And Good Wine. She works for a non-profit. April always has a book on hand. In her free time she can be found binge watching The Office with her husband and toddler, spending way too much time on Pinterest or exploring her neighborhood.


  1. Danielle D says

    Yay, thank you! So excited to check this out!


  1. Novel Sounds says:

    […] July 8 Good Books & Good Wine Thursday, July 10 Perpetual Page Turner Tuesday, July 15 Alice Marvels Thursday, July 17 […]

  2. […] July 8 Good Books & Good Wine Thursday, July 10 Perpetual Page Turner Tuesday, July 15 Alice Marvels Thursday, July 17 […]

  3. […] July 8 Good Books & Good Wine Thursday, July 10 Perpetual Page Turner Tuesday, July 15 Alice Marvels Thursday, July 17 […]

Leave a Comment


CommentLuv badge

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: